Sunday, December 6, 2015

CRAFTED -- in Winnipeg!

In late October, I posted a note about a then-up-coming event in Winnipeg -- the CRAFTED Show and Sale.  Cathie Ugrin, a SAQA member from "The Peg", participated in this weekend-long event; here is her report.  :-)

In celebration of Craft Year 2015, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, Manitoba Craft Council and Nunavut Arts and Crafts Association came together to create CRAFTED Show + Sale (November 6 & 7).  The combined vision was to create a fabulous sale that would honour the professionalism, skill, knowledge, time and creative integrity of the participants.
I am a Winnipeg based fabric artist and was honoured to be among the 50 selected artisans to take part in this unique and exciting event!
The atmosphere was electric!  As soon as we walked through the doors the night before to set-up, everyone knew this was going to be THE inaugural craft/art event of the season and we just couldn’t wait to get started.  What made it so special?  All the participants were juried in so the ‘cream of the crop’ were showing what fine craft is really all about.  The diversity of the art displayed on all four floors of the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) was amazing, and it was great to meet the artists from Nunavut.  Some of the incredible mediums used by the vendors that were a part of CRAFTED include jewellery...

The work of Daria Tittenberger, Winnipeg

Customers admiring the work of Sonja Rosenberg, Winnipeg

Pieces created by Jerry Ell, Iqaluit

Necklaces created by CJ Tennant, Winnipeg

Ceramics...including these artists:

Artist: Crystal Nykoluk of Winnipeg

Kevin Conlin - Winnipeg

as well as glass, wood, book-binding, paper...

Woodwork by Carson Hill, Winnipeg

and fibre, including wearable art by Faith Kreelak

and home decor created by...our own Cathie Ugrin:

Cathie's display at CRAFTED

Cathie working at her booth

Cathie adds:

CRAFTED was also partnered with ‘Chase the Chill in Winnipeg’ to “yarn storm” or “graffiti-knit” the main floor and front foyer.  The rainbow of scarves trimming the ceiling and dripping with warmth and colour was a dynamic art installation in and of itself and gave a sense of joy and fun to the surroundings.  After the event, the 350+ scarves were distributed to shelters throughout Winnipeg. 

Speaking from the perspective of one of the vendors, the word to describe it all is exciting with a capitol E! CRAFTED was the inaugural event of its kind - I’d even say [an] experiment - and it was a huge success.  The positive response from the attendees was incredible.  The timing couldn’t have been better.  The surroundings were majestic and wonderfully uncluttered.  Overall, the artists had great exposure and sales over $100,000.  Although there were other fibre-related vendors strewn throughout the gallery,  I was the only ‘quilter’/ fabric artist and my location in the Atrium was ideal! The show was well organized and virtually stress-free thanks to the fabulous coordination of both the WAG and Manitoba Craft Council (MCC). 

Saturday morning shoppers at CRAFTED

Over 3500 people attended the two-day event held throughout all four floors of the gallery -- admiring, purchasing, chatting with the artisans, attending workshops and even sipping wine in the beautiful and grand space of the Winnipeg Art Gallery. The Gallery Store was open and offering a 10% discount to all visitors of CRAFTED to complete the experience.

View of the Atrium at the WAG,
including a colourful 'yarn storm' of scarves

Looking ahead to next year, due to its overwhelming success, CRAFTED will be back! The ideas are already flowing as I look forward to creating new work for next year’s event – stay tuned!

Thanks for sharing this event with us, Cathie!  Best wishes for success with next year's CRAFTED!

Meanwhile...Are you working on an exciting project?  Have you participated in an art event and/or have you been recognized for your work?  Sharing with SAQA WC readers inspires and encourages all of us!  Contact Margaret (Co-Rep, Alberta) by e-mail with your story!